Part of the Finnish SINI Group, Sinituote Oy supplies a range of products for cleaning and clothing care under the SINI brand. In January Sinituote installed an Atlas Copco NGP 9 nitrogen generator in its production plant in Kokemäki, thus eliminating the use of bottled nitrogen gas. “Comparing the price of rental gas to the price of gas produced onsite had a major impact on our decision,” says Foreman Jarkko Heino.
Jarkko Heino and Janne Sillanpaa with the Atlas Copco NGP nitrogen generator
The Atlas Copco NGP nitrogen generator is used to produce the nitrogen required for manufacturing plastic products. Why did Sinituote make the switch from using nitrogen in bottles?
According to Heino, in light of the amount of gas used in production, it was a sensible investment. “Another benefit we considered was the elimination of production stoppages. As the plastic molding machines are in operation 24/7, running out of gas could lead to a stoppage of more than 24 hours, particularly if it happened the night before a delivery. Also, we saw an opportunity to save money on raw materials and achieve longer cycle times in production.”
Sinituote previously managed with bottled gas because nitrogen was only required in the manufacture of one product. “However,” says Heino, “we have been performing test runs for some time and now that we have ‘free’ gas, we intend to use our own gas for future products.”
Cost-effective onsite gas generation
Based on proven technology that is simple, reliable and durable, Atlas Copco NGP nitrogen generators offer a cost-effective means of onsite gas generation. Pressure Swing Adsorption technology is used to isolate nitrogen molecules from other molecules in compressed air. Oxygen, CO2, water vapor and other gases are adsorbed. The result is virtually pure nitrogen at the outlet of the generator. The NGP Series is used in a range of industries, including food and beverages, metal processing, and electronics.
Sinituote’s partnership with Atlas Copco began in 2003 when the current GA 50 VSD FF-13 compressor was installed in the Kokemäki plant and operated satisfactorily. The company’s experiences with Atlas Copco’s new nitrogen generator are equally positive.
Production planning easier
Sinituote says that although the generator has not been in use for long, so far the operation of the equipment and the service provided by Atlas Copco have been excellent. The nitrogen generator solution has made production planning easier as gas is now always available. Handling empty gas bottles and ordering new bottles are no longer problems and production sequences can be planned for longer cycles.